From the cool interactive name badges to the expanded agenda of educational breakouts,'s annual conference in November wowed attendees with many new initiatives. A record-breaking number of more than 250 planners and 423 hospitality partners attended this year, taking over the beautiful grounds of the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess in Scottsdale, Ariz. Celebrating its 50-year anniversary, the association integrated the theme, License To Learn: Bond in 007, into the four-day conference. The theme came full circle when founding member and conference attendee Jim Dreyer was recognized in a video interview that highlighted some of the changes planners have experienced during the past 50 years.
Among the firsts at the 2007 conference were many environmentally friendly meeting practices that ranged from recyclable signage to the use of water coolers instead of bottled water. To limit paper, electronic conference schedules and session evaluations were used on nTag interactive name badges, and a flash drive with presenters' PowerPoint presentations was included with attendees' registration materials.
Educational highlights included more than 30 breakouts that were aimed at both novice and veteran planners as well as Hospitality Partners. They featured speakers on topics that ranged from industry compliance to social networking to planner-seller negotiations. The presentations are available to members at www.ficpnet.com.